COLIN DAVIS, the long-serving principal conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra renowned for his interpretations of Mozart, Sibelius and Berlioz, has died aged 85.
Davis conducted many of the LSO's annual series at the Royal Festival Hall in the 1960s and 1970s and led it on its first world tour in 1964, going to the United States, Japan, Korea and Hong Kong.
He was the LSO's principal conductor from 1995 to 2006, and took it to New York in 1997 to conduct its first residency at the Lincoln Center. Davis himself served as principal guest conductor of the New York Philharmonic from 1998 to 2003.
Joanna Gueritz, a member of the London Symphony Chorus, wrote: "He drew wonderful performances from us with his impish humour and obvious deep love of the music. He charmed us into the performances he wanted. He is much loved and will be very badly missed."
Davis's awards for his recordings and live performances included Grammys, two Classical Brit Male Artist of the Year awards and honours from Italy, France, Germany and Finland.
Davis was chief conductor of the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra from 1983 to 1993, and also worked with London's Royal Opera House, the BBC Symphony Orchestra and the English Chamber Orchestra, while mentoring students at the Royal Academy of Music and the Guildhall School, also in London.